Lag Ba’Omer is the 33rd day of the Omer and the day that the great Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai passed away. Just before he died he instructed his disciples that this day should be a joyous one. It’s also the day that the plague that raged through Rabbi Akiva’s students ceased.

It’s tradition to celebrate Lag Ba’Omer with a bonfire. For weeks children around the country from all different backgrounds gather sticks and fire wood to burn in their bonfires on Lag Ba’Omer.

Every year Lag Ba’Omer brings tens of thousands of people to Mount Meron in the North of Israel. Celebrations around the bonfire go on to early hours of the morning. In previous years when an emergency occurred people had trouble identifying exactly where they were located which understandably delayed the paramedic arriving. This year United Hatzalah has divided the mountain into numbers to help solve this issue.

There will be 580 signs in 97 different areas around Meron. With numbers from 1-97 in the event of an emergency, the person calling in for medical assistance needs to state the number closest to him, this way the paramedic will know where to go and try and get there as quickly as possible. The maps that will be distributed to all emergency personnel in Meron were shown to the Internal Security Minister of Israel Yitzhak Aharonovich who only had praise for United Hatzalah.

In the past there have been many road accidents to and from the Meron Mountain, some fatal. We urge drivers to be cautious on the road and if tired to pull over and rest for a while. Alternatively where possible, use public transport.

United Hatzalah wishes Am Yisrael a wonderful chag and may everyone stay safe.